7 Powerful Ways to Show Love to Children
by Steve Brunkhorst
"All the beautiful sentiments in
the world weigh less than a single lovely action."
- poet James Russell Lowell
Our children are our most important legacy to the world. However, our love
is our most important legacy to our children. Here are seven ways to show
love that will help children build sturdy foundations for the future.
1. Spend Time with Your Children.
Time is the most loving gift we can give to our children. It allows for the
mutual exchange of ideas, emotions, actions, and words that help our
children develop and learn to communicate.
Enjoy a toddler's tea parties as well as a teen's ball games. Help your
children build things and create art. Begin new family traditions that you
can enjoy together each year. Ample time spent in mutually enjoyable
activities will create memories you will always treasure.
2. Be the Primary Role Model for Your Children.
Children need examples to follow. Teach practical values to your children by
modeling those values. Admit when you have made a mistake and apologize.
Model being committed to the ideals you embrace. Demonstrate the advantage
of integrity over peer pressure.
We teach and influence children more through actions than words. We are our
children's first heroes; the ideals that we live today are the ideals that
will influence our children throughout life.
3. Listen to Your Children.
A child's message is one of his or her most essential gifts. We build
self-esteem in children when we show interest in what they have to say.
Children need to communicate their pride of accomplishment as well as their
Get down at eye level with very young children and listen with your eyes,
ears, and heart. Listen most of all to the feelings conveyed through a
child's eyes and expressions. If you listen to your children deeply, they
will grow up listening deeply to you.
4. Provide Your Children with Loving Discipline.
Children need guidelines and safe boundaries without being constrained
unnecessarily. They need to learn the value of being accountable for their
choices and actions.
Let your children know that you disapprove of hurtful actions but will
always love them as sons and daughters. Loving discipline enables them to
recognize the best in other people. It allows children the freedom to
explore the world safely and reach their highest potential.
5. Give Your Children Encouragement.
Encouraging words are powerful emotional deposits of confidence and
self-esteem. Verbally acknowledge your children's special talents and
accomplishments. Catch your children doing something great, and tell them
what a great job they have done.
Children need to know that we recognize and support their hopes and dreams
for the future. Encouraging children to grow mentally, emotionally, and
spiritually provides the foundation for living a balanced life.
6. Share Your Experiences with Your Children.
We each have valuable stories to tell, unique maps of our journey through
life. These stories tell how our reactions to events created the life we are
living now. Sharing the benefit of your experiences the roadblocks and
rewards is a very loving way to guide your children.
Your children may face many of the situations you faced. Your experiences
can help them make informed decisions and avoid unnecessary mistakes. Among
the most worthwhile possessions that we can someday leave for our children
are journals filled with the stories that shaped our lives.
7. Love and Support Your Children Unconditionally.
Love is an unconditional gift from the heart; it is not a reward for good
behavior. Let your children know that you will love and support them in any
situation. This message creates a sturdy bond of trust. Your children will
grow to feel safe in coming to you with any problem they face.
Children need the freedom to make decisions, try new things, and learn that
life requires personal responsibility and persistence. They need the freedom
to fail and learn from mistakes without being judged. Unconditional love
helps them to acquire the decisiveness and resiliency required to become
If you could sum up all of our children's needs, hopes, and expectations in
one word, that word would be love. We share love when we play a central role
in our children's world of learning and discovery. Our legacy of love will
have a guiding influence upon our children and grandchildren for many
Copyright 2005 by Steve Brunkhorst. Steve is a professional life success
coach, motivational author, and the editor of Achieve! 60-Second Nuggets of
Inspiration, a popular mini-zine bringing great stories, motivational
nuggets, and inspiring thoughts to help you achieve more in your career and
personal life. http://www.AchieveEzine.com
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